Vietnam-Bulgaria: Friendships Endure as Both Nations Recover from Covid-19
|Bulgarian President Rumen Radev received Vietnamese Ambassador Doan Tuan Linh presenting his Credentials Letter. Photo: WVR|
Bulgaria was one of the first 10 countries in the world to recognize and establish diplomatic relations with Vietnam (October 8, 1950), beginning the traditional friendship and long-term cooperation between the two countries.
Recently, in the policy of expanding and strengthening relations with Asian countries, Bulgaria has paid special attention to strengthening relations with Vietnam. Notably, during talks and contacts, senior leaders of Bulgaria all expressed their desire to upgrade relations with Vietnam to the level of a strategic partnership.
On the occasion of the bilateral visit to the Republic of Bulgaria by Vice President Vo Thi Anh Xuan from October 25-27, at the invitation of Bulgarian Vice President Iliana Lotova, Vietnamese Ambassador to Bulgaria Doan Tuan Linh shared about the visit as well as the relationship between the two countries.
|Vietnamese Ambassador to Bulgaria Doan Tuan Linh. Photo: WVR|
The visit promotes cooperation
Can you tell us the purpose, meaning and some important contents of Vice President Vo Thi Anh Xuan's visit to Bulgaria from October 25-27?
Vice President Vo Thi Anh Xuan pays an official visit to the Republic of Bulgaria from October 25-27, 2021. This is the first visit of a senior Vietnamese leader to Bulgaria within the framework of the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations.
As the first high-level foreign affairs activity resumed after a hiatus due to Covid-19, the Vice President's visit to the Republic of Bulgaria aims to strengthen the traditional friendship between Vietnam and Bulgaria in the fields of cooperation in general. At the same time, it aims to find common ground, promote cooperation in a number of specific fields in particular, and bring the relationship into effect, in line with the strengths and needs of the two sides.
The content of the exchange during the visit is expected to focus on assessing the current state of cooperation between the two countries and discussing measures to promote cooperation in the coming time in politics-diplomacy, economy, trade-investment, education, culture, labor cooperation in the context of post-pandemic recovery.
How do you evaluate the relationship between Vietnam and Bulgaria? What is the role of the Embassy in promoting bilateral relations?
Bulgaria is in the group of traditional friends of Vietnam and is one of the first 10 countries in the world to recognize and establish diplomatic relations with Vietnam (February 8, 1950). The historical relationship between Vietnam and Bulgaria was laid down from President Ho Chi Minh's official friendship visit to Bulgaria in August 1957.
Although it has changed over the historical periods and there have been times of stagnation, in general, it can be assessed that the cooperative relationship between the two countries has developed well and has been maintained over the years.
Carrying out the duties of the Vietnamese representative missions abroad, the Vietnamese Embassy in Bulgaria in general and the officers and staff working at the Embassy in particular have been, are and will continue to make efforts in their role. They are acting as a bridge to promote political-diplomatic exchanges, economic cooperation and other fields of cooperation in the two countries.
Vietnam - Important partner of Bulgaria
What is the potential for developing relations between the two countries, especially in the post-pandemic recovery period?
Vietnam attaches importance to maintaining and strengthening friendly relations and cooperation with Bulgaria. Bulgaria affirmed that Vietnam is one of its important partners in Southeast Asia. With that policy of the two countries, the Vietnam-Bulgarian partnership still has a lot of potential for development in the coming time when the two countries gradually stabilize in response to the pandemic.
The EVFTA Agreement comes into effect, opening up many opportunities for Vietnamese and Bulgarian businesses in trade, investment and business activities, creating favorable conditions for the two countries' goods to penetrate each other's markets, especially strength products.
The agreement on educational cooperation for the period of 2019-2022 and for the following periods will facilitate the exchange of students and trainees between the two countries. Forms of cooperation and exchange of lecturers and students between universities, colleges and educational institutions of the two countries are also being encouraged to promote all resources and improve cooperation efficiency.
Can you give information about the situation of the Vietnamese in Bulgaria. How did the Embassy support people to overcome difficulties of the pandemic?
The number of Vietnamese in Bulgaria has tended to decrease in recent years because some have returned home and some, mostly second-generation, have moved to Western European countries to study and work. Currently, the number of Vietnamese people in Bulgaria is less than 1,000, most of them have a relatively stable life, mainly trading in garments, handicrafts or agricultural products.
The Vietnamese community in Bulgaria well abides by local laws and always looks towards the homeland and the country. The community has the advantage of having a deep understanding of the host country, as a significant part of the community used to be students, export workers in Bulgaria, has knowledge and good relations with the Bulgarian government.
The Covid-19 pandemic has affected the life and work of the community. However, promoting the hardworking nature of Vietnamese people, the community has made efforts to overcome the effects of the pandemic to maintain business. Within the scope of its work and capabilities, the Vietnamese Embassy in Bulgaria regularly cares, monitors, supports and creates favorable conditions to help people in general, as well as legitimate needs during the Covid-19 situation in particular.
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